Made in New York: What Went Into The Search and State / No. 22 kit collaboration
Custom fabrics; subtle yet nuanced design; attention to every detail; made in New York. Search and State is the perfect partner for the No. 22 kit collaboration. We talked with SAS co-founder and creative genius Daniel Golden about his passion for handmade creations, what went into this partnership, and rippin' around on a No. 22 Drifter.
What's your first bike-related memory?
My first memories on a bike are definitely BMX related. I was fortunate enough to have enough room in my backyard as a kid to build a pretty solid dirt track that became the only spot in town to hit some big jumps and stuff like that so it became the neighborhood hot spot and we loved every minute of it. But after that it was all about road cycling. I raced motocross in my early 20s, but retired early due to injuries, and got myself a real road bike. The very first time I threw a leg over that thing with the skinny tires and hit the open road I was hooked. You could go fast and far and whip it around on the downhills. It got me good. I loved it and have been riding for over 25 years now.
How often do you ride today? And what sort of cycling are you into?
I have limited time now due to the company and family so I pretty much just get out there and go wide-open for an hour on the road or on some gravel and that's about it. I also do a bunch of bike-packing when I can and that's taken me to some amazing places. There is something very addictive about the freedom of being out there somewhere remote with all your belongings strapped to your bike and you're just out there living and exploring.
What were you up to before you started Search and State?
After racing motocross, I went to design school at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC and have been a fashion designer for about 25 years now, working at some great fashion houses and with some amazing people.
How did Search and State come to be?
I started the company when I decided I had had enough of designing for big corporate fashion houses, and also couldn't really find the cycling clothes in the market that I was looking for. I decided to make the stuff I wanted to wear and went to market with that and it took off from there pretty quick.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
I love understated, impeccable garments usually devoid of bells and whistles or gimmicks. I love fabric and always have. There is something very special about it to me. Fit, fabric, function; Those are a few of the pillars for me. I have also studied a lot military gear and have a pretty solid vintage collection of my own at home that I reference a lot. And I love the color black.
You own a No. 22. Which bike and what's the experience been like?
I have a Drifter and it's been amazing. To be honest, it's made me not want to ride my other bikes. It's incredibly comfortable, handles great, it's quiet and I hammer on it on the road, in the mountains, dirt, gravel, whatever. It really surprised me how smooth the ride is and it has definitely renewed my faith in frame-building and riding. It's been that fun to ride. And it's just a beauty to look at!
A big element of Search and State is that your pieces are all made in New York. Tell us a little bit about that process.
We do everything right in mid-town Manhattan and wouldn't do it any other way. Aside from being socially compliant, ethical, sustainable, and fully transparent, which are all meaningful to us, we get to be in the factory every day with some of the most talented and skilled garment workers in the world. I have made clothes all over the world and in all kinds of facilities and I haven't found any process or output than can match the quality we get out of our rooms. It's truly amazing and we are inspired everyday to go in make our clothing the way we do.
Tell us a little bit about the process of designing the collab kit with No. 22. Where did the colours, the look, the overall design ideas come from?
The process was simple and I think we hit it off pretty quickly. But we stay in our lane and respect people who know what they want and also respect what we do and vice versa. We spoke a few times over the phone and then pretty much just got after it. [No. 22 Co-founder] Bryce knew what he wanted and it fit right into what we do so it has been a great match so far. We love what they do and this felt like a good fit and the results are in the garments.
What's your fav piece from the collection, personally?
It's all great if you as me! But, I do have an affinity for vests. I just feel ready for action with that extra layer on.
And where is your all-time favourite place to go for a ride?
That's a tough one. I have been to some really amazing places—anywhere from sea-level (Cuba) to way up high in the mountains in Europe and out West here in the States. I'll take anything really. I'm a busy dude with the company and a child at home, so I am just grateful anytime I have two wheels under me.
For more on Search and State's commitment to making beautiful apparel in New York City's Garment District, check out their featurette on the process: